New tech arrives with smart grid
With an increase in funding going toward the smart grid, companies are creating new technologies to work alongside the energy system.
With expanded awareness and funds going toward the development of the smart grid, many industrial giants are creating technologies work in unison with the new energy system. The companies include Cisco, Google, and IBM, and according to the Toronto Star , these corporations, along with some lesser-known ones, see the grid as a sort of venture capitalism, creating products to work with system before the grid is even in place.
GridPoint , based in Arlington, Va., is one of the leaders in smart grid advancements. Dealing with power management, GridPoint has created a software program that integrates utilities with renewable energy, energy storage, and even electric cars into the grid. The company also has raised enough funds to purchase a software company that manages electric cars and a separate software company that allows businesses to manage their energy output from their computer or mobile phone.
Microsoft also is becoming involved in smart grid technology. The software leader has developed the Hohm , a Web-based device that tracks the energy use of users in a way to assist businesses or home owners understand where they can lower their energy costs and reduce their impact on the environment.
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Annual Salary Survey
After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.
The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.